Amazon has just broken another record — this time, however, the online retail giant has no reason to celebrate. It has just become the company to receive the highest fine under the General Data Protection Regulation, better known as the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), the European legislation for the protection of personal data. The company is being forced to pay, in euros, the equivalent of US$ 884 million (about R$ 4.5 billion at the current exchange rate).
The sentence would have been handed down on July 16, but was revealed only today through a financial report sent by Amazon itself to the US Securities and Exchange Commission. The body responsible for the penalty was the Luxembourg branch of the National Data Protection Commission (National Commission for Data Protection or CNPD, body responsible for overseeing the proper functioning of GDPR throughout the European Union). The marketplace, however, does not agree with the decision.
“There was no data breach and no customer data was exposed to third parties. These facts are indisputable. We strongly disagree with the decision of the CNPD”, said an Amazon spokesman in an interview with Bloomberg. Indeed, the penalty is the result of a series of complaints filed in 2018 by the French activist group La Quadrature du Net, which filed several lawsuits against numerous big techs, including Gigante das Buscas — which was penalized in 2019.
It’s not clear which complaints are at stake, but the company was asked to “change its business practices”, which we may interpret as complaints about antitrust practices adopted by the company. Anyway, Amazon guaranteed that it will appeal and categorized the fine as “without any basis”.